By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
Although its meaning and significance may differ from place-to-place, Christmas is a holiday that is celebrated all over the world.
For some, it can be a time to celebrate the birth of the Christ child, which is always near the Christian heart, while for others it is simply a time for giving, of gathering with family and friends, to share human warmth and kindness. But, perhaps, for all of us, it is a time to remember that there is a greater purpose to life than merely living. To understand that service is above self, that it is better to give than to receive, gives purpose to life, brings joy to the heart, health to the body and substance to the soul, and to ultimately realize, like the Grinch, “What if Christmas,’ he thought, ‘doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
In politics, it is easy to become cynical, jaded and selfish. The power of politics can rob the soul of purpose, harden the heart, and take from life its true purpose, as Benjamin Franklin said, “How many observe Christ’s birthday? How few, His precepts!”
We have seen that embodied in the actions of Mike Hubbard, who while indicted on 23 felony counts of public corruption, still remains Speaker, using his power to try and thwart justice, enrich himself and destroy those who speak the truth about him.
The Golden Rule of doing unto others has been perverted to mean, he who has the gold makes the rules.
From Washington DC to Washington County, Alabama, political meddling is systematically dismantling the American Dream, not only as it applies to upward mobility economically, but also mental, and even spiritual enlightenment.
Arrogance blended with ignorance is the highly toxic tonic amply supplied by politicos, and by many in the media, meant to leave a tired populous slumbering, unaware of the real causes of the current crisis that threatens our Nation and State’s future.
Power and greed are at the root of our political problems, which manifest themselves in poor education, inadequate healthcare, underemployed and unemployed citizens.
Terrorists, immigrants, or the “War on Christmas” are not the greatest threat to our State or Nation, it is the ignorance of the machinations of politics that threatens our future.
Far too many of our citizens are blissfully ignorant of what is happening in their State government, and Montgomery politicos are happy about it. Most Alabamians know more about the failings of President Obama, than their own State legislator. Do they know that their State representative voted to reelect Hubbard as Speaker, despite his felony indictments? Are they aware that State Finance Director Bill Newton, through incompetence, failed to properly and timely implement a $47 million no-bid software system that has left hundreds of millions in unpaid bills? Are the people of Etowah and St. Clair Counties aware that their Republican State Senator Phil Williams has landed on the payroll of 43 special interests since being elected in 2010? And many others politicians like Williams have seen their personal wealth increase while their constituents have seen cuts in government services and an increase in taxes?
Politicos who wear their Christianity on their sleeves, while hiding their misdeeds in the dark, are the worst examples of the orgy of greed and corruption that effects our State government.
But, the promise of Christmas is hope.
So let us join together in wishing the people of our State a Merry Christmas with all the high expectations it brings.
As Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote:
“And in despair I bowed my head;
There is no peace on earth,” I said;
For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
God is not dead, nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
the Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!”